Document Management Factors Small Businesses Must Assess

Have you ever considered how document handling and processing can impact your business and the effect this can have on an employee’s average working day?


If you’ve ever lost important documents, you will know how costly it is to recreate them or have them duplicated. Apart from the physical cost, it also takes unnecessary time and causes unwanted frustration. Do you collaborate on documents or create legal documents that have to be approved by a given deadline? The deadline is approaching fast and you’re wasting time collating and reviewing comments from colleagues! Do you send important documents by post to ensure they are delivered on time?


Here are some of the document management factors that can affect your business.


  • Many employees use email for collaboration. Just think about the number of attachments that will be duplicated and the confusion this may cause if the final version needs to be traced! Find ways of electronically managing documents to reduce duplication and provide tools that will allow employees to annotate and review these annotations.



  • On average, nearly 10% of business documents may be lost, misplaced or misfiled. Discover if there are more efficient ways of filing the documents securely.



  • Searching for documents but not finding them wastes a considerable amount of employee time and may be cited as a the key factor that can account for lost organisational productivity. Discover if there are more efficient ways of filing the documents and searching for these documents and information when needed.



  • Employees can spend a notable amount of time getting documents signed or documents approved. Research tools that allow workflow approval and offer digital signatures.



  • Many professionals need to be able to collate information from many different types of documents and then present these in another. Think about how much time is spent finding this information, how documents are collated and how a new document can be created.



  • The cost to send a parcel by post in the UK starts at £7.25. Review what types of documents you are sending to customers and the costs involved to send them. Do you know how much time is spent by employees on these document related tasks?


These factors clearly indicate it is important to review any document management process and analyse the time they take; time spent filing, searching or re-creating documents for example. Review document handling systems or workflows that route documents between each stage of the processes to understand how efficient these are for the business. Review any paper based document processes that remain, and review the paper documents that remain consuming costly physical storage space. These types of documents are hard to reach and find, especially those stored off-site.


Adopting the concept of a paperless office by creating electronic documents can significantly improve accessibility of this vital information. Finally, consider the benefits of introducing an electronic document management system to reduce or eliminate many of the electronic or paper based document process problems that can attribute to the reduction of business productivity and efficiency.